The series follows the episodic structure of MLP closely, with one ten-minute episode for each episode of the show in its original airing order. However, the overarching plot gradually diverges from that of the series, gearing toward a wartime story.
Equestria's Mundane Fantastic setting is mostly played straight, which gives the series plenty of ammunition for parody and deconstruction of the show's inconsistencies and fairytale aspects. Like many Abridged Series, it also plays with the Fourth Wall, making it an integral part of the world's workings.
As a late contender on the MLP Abridged scene, the series makes itself unique by not parodying just the original show but by also referencing already existing abridged series and subverting common tropes.
You can watch the whole series on YouTube here.
There was also a Crossover (with another MLP abridged series, Friendship Is for Adults) titled "Scootertrix Is for Adults". This crossover led to the spin-off series Royal Correspondence, which focuses on the Princesses of both universes.
This Abridged Series contains the following tropes:
- Aborted Arc:
- Applejack calls The Bird "Sally" in episode 3. Twilight comments on this, but it never gets brought up again. This was supposed to be the start of a Running Gag where AJ constantly got others' names wrong when she wasn't using nicknames. Getschman dropped the joke because he thought it would interfere with some later scenes.
- Early episodes have an odd gag where others would compliment Rarity on her generosity. Or Rarity would call someone else generous, then a Sting would play while the camera zoomed in on Rarity's face. Then the joke just stops. Getschman doesn't even remember what that running gag was supposed to be leading up to.
- Getschman initially planned on a crazy reveal near the end of the series: that Pinkie Pie was a villain from the very beginning. Her subplot with the Fourth Wall was supposed to foreshadow this, since everyone else who interacts with the Fourth to that extent is a villain or antagonist: Nightmare Moon, the dragon on the mountain, and Trixie (who even says that the Fourth is a dark, evil power). But as the show went on, Getschman realized Pinkie was acting too nice for a supposedly evil character. He specifically noted that her compassion for Rarity in episode 14 was the last straw. So he scrapped that particular plot twist and says he has a completely different arc planned for Pinkie.
- Accent Slip Up: A changeling in disguise as a pony (specifically Kyle, disguised as Fluttershy in episode 20) accidentally cries out in his normal voice when he trips and falls on his face.
- Accidental Misnaming: Twilight mispronounces Tirek as "Tie-reek".
- The Ace: Flash Sentry hasn't appeared on-screen yet, but is described by everyone as the shining star of the military academy, and has won every battle he's fought.
- Acme Products: In episode 15, Twilight uses an "ACME Lie Detector" on Pinkie.
- Adaptational Badass: In the show, Flash Sentry was just a love interest for Twilight Sparkle in the Equestria Girls movies. Here, however, he's an ace commander, tactical genius, and military hero who has never lost a single battle. Apple Bloom considers him her rival due to him constantly one-upping her progress.
- Adaptational Early Appearance: Even though Scootertrix's source material is the first season of Friendship is Magic, characters and locations from later seasons of the original canon are already affecting the plot (many of them from off-screen). King Sombra meddles with Celestia's dreams in episode 8. Queen Chrysalis, the changelings, and the Crystal Empire are discussed in episode 9. Discord, in his petrified form, shows up in episode 15. Flash Sentry wins a major victory for Equestria in episode 18. Lord Tirek tries to invade Equestria in between episodes 22 and 23.
- Adaptational Nice Guy:
- Gilda was a jerk to everyone besides Rainbow Dash in the original episode, but here she just asks a lot of questions and eventually leaves in confusion.
- In the original show, Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon were bullies. Here, Lieutenant Tiara and Spooky Spoon are helpful subordinates to the Cutie Mark Crusaders.
- Adaptation Name Change:
- Rainbow Dash goes by The Bird here.
- In this version, Little Strongheart is instead a changeling infiltrator named Harper.
- Applejack's mother is named General Builder rather than Pear Butter. Of course, the script for this reveal was written before "The Perfect Pear" aired.
- Adaptational Villainy:
- Steven Magnet was harmless in the original series. Here, he's Rarity's arch-nemesis; a later episode confirms that he's tried to kill and eat her multiple times in the past.
- Trixie gets an upgrade from mere nuisance on the show to Twilight's (supposed) arch-nemesis.
- And similarly, Derpy is eventually revealed to be the arch-nemesis of The Bird.
- Little Strongheart was the one buffalo who argued against fighting the ponies. Here, she's reinterpreted as Harper, a changeling infiltrator among the buffalo who argues for going to war with Equestria.
- A Day in the Limelight: The 2015 Halloween Episode is focused on Luna, to the point that she even replaces Celestia's usual appearance in the opening titles.
- Advertised Extra:
- Celestia's guards Aberforth and The Fourth Steven appear in the remixed opening titles for the Royal Correspondence spin-off, billed just after Celestia and Luna. But, ironically, they show up less in that series than in the main series. Aberforth gets a single non-speaking role in a flashback, and that's all.
- Starting with episode 11, the Royal Correspondence titles got revamped, removing Aberforth and The Fourth Steven in the process. Ironically, Aberforth gets an actual (if brief) speaking role in episode 17—so his role got bigger after he was dropped from the opening.
- Aerith and Bob: Some ponies have normal Equestrian names like Twilight Sparkle and Applejack, while others have normal Earth names like Charlene and Jeff. And then there are names that don't quite fit into either category, like The Bird, Singing Steve, and The Fourth Steven.
- Always Someone Better:
- Celestia is insanely jealous of Kevin Bacon's apparent faultlessness.
- Apple Bloom resents Flash Sentry's unbroken streak of military victories, and she accuses him of always stealing her glory.
- And Starring: Spike is always introduced after the Mane Six in the opening credits with "and Spike".
- And Then What?: Twilight tries to call out Nightmare Moon on the futility of her plan to cause eternal night, noting that it would only result in the death of all life and the desolation of the world she's just conquered. Unfortunately, it turns out that's exactly what Nightmare Moon wants.
- Angrish: In episode 10 Twilight wants to blast the bug swarm with the Elements of Harmony, but she's so flustered that she stumbles over her words and loses all ability to articulate her plan.Twilight: That's it! Heat up the death ray!
Applejack: The what?
Twilight: The death, friendship, the magic of friendship ray! The magic is friendship!
- Answer Cut:
Twilight: Where do you guys get those, anyway?
- Episode 11, when Twilight is asking about everypony's winter vests:
Pinkie Pie: Ha! You wouldn't believe me if I told you. Get this: it's from...
Rarity: Um, hello, Twilight.
Luna: Are we even prepared for this? Equestria has been at peace for a thousand years.Celestia: Not to worry. I am hiring the absolute greatest generals in all of Equestria.Luna: Really? Who are you getting?[Cut to the Cutie Mark Crusaders]
- Episode 12:
Spike: Hey, Pinkie.
- In episode 8, Twilight offers to tell Applejack "the ultimate knock-knock joke". What Twi does instead is hype the joke up until AJ can't wait any longer, then tricks AJ into swapping places. The punchline is AJ's realization that she's telling a joke and has no idea how it goes.
- When Spike joins Pinkie in the hot air balloon, in episode 13.
Pinkie: Hey, Spike!
Spike: Mind if I join you?
Pinkie: Uh, sure.
Spike: Thanks. [climbs aboard]
Pinkie: Wow. This scene wasn't funny at all.
- April Fools' Day: On April 1, 2017, they re-uploaded "Bean Quest", their abortive first attempt at an MLP abridged series.So this is the first thing that was ever released on Scootertrix Studios. It is also our first attempt at abridging.
After about a month after it's release we took it down for obvious reasons.
- Arch-Nemesis: A Running Gag throughout the series is characters unexpectedly turning out to have an arch-nemesis. Celestia claims to have five, all of which have now been revealed: King Sombra, Queen Chrysalis, Spike, Sunset Shimmer, and Kevin Bacon.
- Arc Words: Both Celestia and Trixie warn, independently of each other, that "unpleasant things stir in the south".
- Armor-Piercing Question:Celestia: Luna, let me ask you a question. If there was a princess who did bad things, but they always resulted in good things happening, would that princess be good?
Luna: Wha— no! She would be evil. That pretty much defines evil. That is evil!
Celestia: Then let's say there is a princess who always tried to do good, but it always seemed to result in evil. Would she be evil?
Luna: No, because at least she tries to do the right thing.
Celestia: Last question. Which one would you want ruling the kingdom?
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
Luna: Is it Discord? Because he's still in the garden. [...] Kevin Bacon? [...] Sombra? Chrysalis? That filly from IKEA?
- In the Christmas Special, Celestia rattles off a long list of Snowdrop's alleged crimes (though Cumulo Nimbus's internal monologue covers up half of it), ending with, "And she hates puppies! ...Probably."
- In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Celestia gloats about finding her arch-nemsis, and Luna tries to guess which of them she's referring to:
- Art Evolution: Starting with episode 19, the show gets a new and improved title sequence. In addition, the airship designs become notably sleeker and more detailed.
- Art Shift: Rarity's tale of her childhood in Episode 14 is illustrated with atmospheric stills drawn by Mikhail Josephson. Ditto Celestia's story of the front lines in Episode 22.
- Attack! Attack... Retreat! Retreat!: In Episode 21, Braeburn gives a speech to rally the militia of the western colonies, vowing that they'll fight to the last against the buffalo forces. Then the buffalo's changeling air support arrive. Braeburn cuts his speech short and calls for a full retreat.
- Audience? What Audience?:
- Trixie falls foul of this when trying to demonstrate her Fourth Wall powers to the Ponyville townsponies; they just think that she's gone mad and is talking to someone who isn't there.
- From episode 13, after a scene transition:Pinkie: And we're back! Applejack and The Bird are still neck and neck.
Spike: Back? Back from what? We're still here.
- In episode 15, Twilight finally witnesses Pinkie talking to someone beyond the Fourth Wall, and is naturally confounded by it, until Pinkie eventually reveals the truth to her.
- Author Filibuster: Played for Laughs. "The Editor" literally pauses the episode in episode 3 so that he can spend about a minute apologizing for a misspelling in the disclaimer of the previous two episodes. Unfortunately, Pinkie won't let him live it down afterward.
- Badass Boast: After the Diamond Dogs have the Mane Six and Spike cornered, Twilight realizes they have to fight their way out, while Fluttershy panics and says they can't fight them. Twilight's response?Twilight: Fluttershy! We are The Elements of Freaking Harmony!
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: In the teaser of episode 15, it looks like Twilight has caught Spike in the act of sending hate mail to Celestia... when in fact, she's just annoyed that he keeps using her parchment supplies without asking. This actually turns out to be a double bait-and-switch, as Celestia catches him in the act moments later.
- Baleful Polymorph: In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Twilight contracts Larsonism, a disease that makes her sprout wings. This is a bad thing because the wings are a significant drain on Twilight's magic, leaving her unable to cast any spells.
- Batman Gambit: Celestia pulls one off in "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis" by correctly predicting that Twilight would attempt to bring Sunset Shimmer back to her throne room.
- Battlecry: Two in the "The Return of Lord Tirek": "HARMONY!" when the Elements of Harmony teleport in, and "FRIENDSHIP!" when they unleash the Friendship Ray.
- Beat: Used often. Most notably, episode 16 opens with Twilight and The Bird staring at each other, silently, for several seconds.
- Beneath Suspicion: Inverted in the Christmas Special. Celestia almost immediately suspects young Snowdrop pranked her, specifically because:Celestia: Nopony would suspect the little blind girl! On the outside she is a harmless filly, but on the inside she is a criminal mastermind!
- Big Budget Beef-Up: Becomes a plot point in episode 25. Pinkie insists that, for all Discord's power, he's still limited to editing footage from the original show. Discord replies that, thanks to Patreon supporters, Scootertrix has a budget now and can make completely original animations as needed—so Discord can really do anything.
- Big "SHUT UP!": Applejack delivers one against Twilight in episode 8, after the latter starts to lose her temper over Rarity's increasingly nonsensical claims.
- Bittersweet Ending:
- Episode 14 ends with only a minor consolation for Rarity.
- Even though "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis" ends with Celestia very happy (and it's heavily implied that she orchestrated the whole thing in the first place), Twilight is sent home unwell and with the disheartening impression that she failed her mission.
- Black Comedy:
- Normally in an Abridged Series, the fact that the characters know they're in a show drives many of the jokes. In this series, it's (mostly) Played for Drama. Pinkie Pie doesn't find it funny that she's a character on a show. Instead, the knowledge that the show could end without warning, due to a copyright takedown or the creators' losing interest, is a constant source of anxiety for her—as are her efforts to prevent other ponies from learning the truth and panicking.
- In episode 12, Scootaloo tells the harrowing tale of how her entire family burned to death in a house fire... and then we find out that it happened yesterday.
- In "The Bird's Arch Nemesis", Derpy gets some horrific injuries from her fight with The Bird. As she lies in a hole, screaming in pain and describing her injuries in great detail, most of the ponies around her just get annoyed or grossed out.
- "Blackmail" Is Such an Ugly Word: In episode 16:Twilight: What? No! No, it's not cheating. We're just... bending the rules a little, that's all.
- Blind Mistake: Episode 20 introduces Photo Finish, whose blindness means she can't tell how many ponies are in a room. She freaks out every time someone new talks to her.
- Body Horror: Played with in Episode 22, as the various antics of Celestia's pet bird—twisting her neck with audible cracks, swelling up with the water from the bathtub—terrify Fluttershy.
- Boring Return Journey: In Episode 7, the mane six deal with the dragon during the Cold Open. They spend the rest of the episode just getting back down the mountain.Twilight: You know, when you think of grand adventures, of dragons and quests, you forget about the long, uneventful journey home.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Discord rewrites Pinkie Pie as an insane psychopath, in an attempt to make her murder her friends.
- Break the Haughty: Apple Bloom, the confident master strategist and ringleader of the trio of generals, falls into despair when her military plans fail. It takes a potent pep talk from fellow generals Loo and Belle to snap her out of it.
- Broken Masquerade: In episode 15, Twilight finally discovers the Fourth Wall and wrestles with the knowledge that she's a character in a cartoon show.
- Brutal Honesty: In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis":Sunset Shimmer: Okay, you guys are officially freaking me out right now. Is this a prank?
The Bird: No, we're trying to kill you.
- Buffy Speak: In episode 17, Fluttershy calls the cockatrice a "cocka-snake... chicken-head... thing".
- ...But He Sounds Handsome:
DoodledPony: Huh, The Bird sounds more handsome than usual. ... I wonder why.
- In the storybook opening of episode 1, the narrator pauses the action to gush over how awesome Princess Celestia is, and how much power it takes to raise and lower the Sun. Episode 2 reveals that Celestia herself was the narrator of that segment.
- Meta example in episode 20. Leslie, the changeling who imitates The Bird, is voiced by DoodledPony (creator of [HORSE]). In the comment section below the video, he wrote:
- By "No", I Mean "Yes":Celestia: Twilight, look. Friendship isn't always the answer. Well I mean, it is, but this time it wasn't.
- In episode 15, Twilight recalls several of Pinkie's various Fourth Wall breaks from previous episodes.
- The Bird's altitude-enhanced intelligence, first established in Episode 16, shows up again when she visits the Badlands in Episode 21.
- Episode 21 also shows Princess Luna governing Equestria by herself, since Celestia left for the front lines, as shown in Royal Correspondence Episode 9.
- Casual Danger Dialogue: In episode 10, The Bird hears the word "movies" and feels the urge to tell the others about her top three favorite movies... while they're all the middle of disposing of the biological weapon. Twilight tries to argue that it's not a good time for this conversation, but even she gets caught up on commenting on The Bird's choices.
- Catchphrase Interruptus: Twilight does this to Rarity in the teaser of episode 9, having predicted that Rarity's about to try to sell her a dress again.
- Cerebus Retcon: Applejack's insistence that her apples are mangoes. Initially it's just a quirk to cement Twilight as an Only Sane Man. But episode 23 reveals that her mother left home after an argument with Granny Smith and said she would return when there were no more apples, so a young Applejack tried to convince herself that they were growing mangoes in the hopes her mother would return.
- Chekhov's Gunman:
- During the rabbit stampede in episode 4, one panicking mare shouts "If only Kevin Bacon were here!", foreshadowing the role he would play in later episodes as an off-screen ace.
- Apple Bloom is introduced in episode 9 merely as Applejack's little sister, but turns out to be Celestia's go-to military general in episode 12.
- Christmas Episode: The special episode "Snowdrop the Abridged" was initially released under the title "Scootertrix the Abridged: Christmas Special". In spite of the fact the plot had nothing to do with Christmas anyway.
- Child Soldiers: Generals Apple Bloom, Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, and their lieutenants Diamond Tiara and Spooky Spoon.
- Cliffhanger: The ending of episode 15. Pinkie Pie explains that knowledge of the Fourth Wall could be dangerous in the wrong hands. The scene cuts to Discord, petrified in Celestia's garden. A crack appears. Roll credits.
- Comically Missing the Point:
The Bird: Okay, I'm back. What'd I miss?
- Applejack completely misinterprets Twilight's reason for visiting her in episode 4. Twi explains that she's discovered an apple brew to neutralize the curse on the town, but Applejack is still firmly in denial about growing apples—she concludes that Twilight's come to sacrifice her.
- In episode 14, when Rarity reveals that she's a changeling, both The Bird and Fluttershy misinterpret it to conclude that Fluttershy is a changeling.
- Again in episode 14, Twilight gets annoyed that The Bird just walked away during an important conversation:
Twilight: What do you mean, you're back?
The Bird: I just went to get some ice cream. They didn't have any chocolate, though.
Twilight: Are you kidding me?!
The Bird: I know. Chocolate's my favorite.
Fluttershy: She just sprouted wings, man! Am I gonna sprout wings?!
- In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", when Twilight spontaneously grows wings, Fluttershy's reaction is:
The Bird: Fluttershy, you have wings.
Fluttershy: Oh my god!
- Comical Overreacting:
- The Cutie Mark Crusaders are confounded, dismayed, and slightly terrified by the concept of negative numbers.
- The mane six all start panicking when Twilight suddenly sprouts wings. And when Princess Luna wonders why growing wings is a bad thing, Celestia acts like that was an incredibly offensive question to ask.
- Continuity Nod:
The Bird: Ah, there it is. Home.
- The Berry Punch Noodle Incident mentioned in the very first episode is brought up again in episode 10.
- In episode 3, Lemon Hearts randomly name-drops someone named Charlene. In episode 10, we actually meet her.
- In episode 7, Fluttershy mentions that she's from Cloudsdale, and describes it as "the safest place in the world", a sentiment that she repeats when she revisits Cloudsdale with The Bird in episode 16:
Fluttershy: Yeah. The safest and most boring place imaginable.
- In episode 21, since Luna is governing Equestria alone in Celestia's absence, she's swapped "the jingle" with the replacement jingle from Royal Correspondence, episode 7—which at the time, Luna preferred and Celestia hated.
- In the special "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Celestia finally gets to engage with a true arch-nemesis, and is clearly enjoying the experience immensely - just as she tried to explain to Luna all the way back in episode 6 when extolling the joys of "arching" to her. (Luna still doesn't agree).
- In the same special, Celestia also threatens to injure Spike by sending an entire sofa via dragonfire — a possibility that Spike considered back in episode 5.
- Also, Rarity, Fluttershy, and The Bird make numerous references to the last time Princess Celestia sent them to a parallel universe (back in "Scootertrix Is for Adults").
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: When Celestia finally discovers that Spike is the one sending her the nasty letters, she retaliates by sending the letters back to Spike. All at the same time. The strain of coughing so many letters leaves Spike debilitated for some hours.
- Cool Airship:
- The Jabberwocky, an Earth pony zeppelin that makes an awesome entrance in episode 16, and also has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it appearance in the opening titles of Royal Correspondence. Episode 16 reveals that the Equestrian military has an fleet of armed airships which they've been building up as a prelude to war.
- Episode 21 reveals that the Changeling Empire also possesses airships, with the appearance of The Swarm, a heavily-armed zeppelin that annihilates Appleloosa.
- Cool Pet: Spike is deeply impressed that Pinkie has an alligator for a pet.
- Couch Gag: A rather subtle one in the ending credits. For the first six episodes, The Editor misspells DeviantArt as "Devient Art". Then in episode 7, the spelling gets fixed. Then in episodes 8 through 14, The Editor goes back to misspelling it—and misspells it a completely different way each time. Then Pinkie Pie points it out in episode 15.
- *Cough* Snark *Cough*: In episode 16:Pinkie: We can't make plot holes like that. It won't make any sense.
- Credits Gag:
- The closing credits for episode 5 are unexpectedly interrupted by the sounds of someone assaulting The Editor; obviously this is Pinkie, who had made a violent threat toward him earlier in the episode.
- Following the destruction of the Fourth Wall in "Trixie the Abridged", Episode 25 has no credits at all.
- "Scootertrix is for Adults", in which an interdimensional portal connects the Scootertrix universe with another MLP abridged series, Friendship Is for Adults. This spawned an ongoing crossover series, Royal Correspondence.
- In "Trixie the Abridged", Twilight and Trixie's duel accidentally transports them both into the universe of My Little Pony: Camaraderie Is Supernatural.
- Critical Existence Failure: When Fluttershy defeats the cockatrice in episode 17, it explodes into vapor. Even she's confused by this.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: The combined magic of the Elements of Harmony literally melts Nightmare Moon's brain. And it's not a quick death, either; she's conscious for several seconds while this is happening.
- Cryptically Unhelpful Answer:Twilight: Actually, you know, I'm curious... why are you called "The Bird"?The Bird: So that there's no confusion.
- Curb-Stomp Battle:
- Twilight immediately defeats Trixie's clone army, thanks to an anti-clone spell.
- The battle between the Zebras and the Changelings apparently went this way. The Zebras had difficulty coordinating because their language consists entirely of riddles.
- In "The Bird's Arch Nemesis", The Bird tries to avoid fighting Derpy, but Derpy keeps attacking her. When The Bird finally does fight back, she leaves Derpy in a battered mess with all her limbs broken.
- In Episode 21, the battle of the western colonies goes this way. Heck, calling it a "battle" is being generous: the pony militia immediately retreats upon seeing the full buffalo-changeling forces.
- The episode "The Return of Lord Tirek" is barely over a minute long, because the mane six kill Tirek with the Elements of Harmony in mere seconds.
- Curse: In episode 4, Applejack forces a herd of cattle to detour around Ponyville, rather than stampeding straight through. The cows retaliate by cursing Ponyville, which afflicts the town with earthquakes, plague, crop failure, and a rabbit stampede over the next few days.
- Curse Cut Short:
- After her first meeting with The Bird, Twilight manages to get out "What the fu—" before the cut to the next scene.
- In episode 3, Spike's f-bomb is cut short by the closing credits.
- In episode 23, Scootaloo responds to Pinkie's sudden disappearance with "What the fu—", then she's cut off by a transition to Discord's statue.
- Cutaway Gag: In episode 21:Chief Thunderhooves: Celestia has parched our land and seeks to settle her outcast ponies here. [...]
The Bird: What do you mean, "outcasts"?
Chief Thunderhooves: Seriously? Have you been to the colonies?
[Cut away to Appleloosa, where all the settler ponies are falling-down drunk or screaming like idiots.]
Applejack: Oh my God, you need to shut up.
- Cute, but Cacophonic: Two of the flower mares, Daisy and Lily, have extremely shrill voices. It's bad enough that, when they get a scene in episode 9, The Editor decides they're just too annoying and fast-forwards through the rest of it.
- Cutting the Knot: At the climax of "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Celestia is powerless because of Sunset Shimmer's presence, and Twilight can't use magic because of her larsonism, so Sunset gloats that nobody can possibly stop her now... Then Luna, who everyone had ignored up to this point, blasts Sunset with her own magic, sending her straight to Tartarus with a single shot.
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Pinkie is reluctant to use her Fourth Wall abilities to solve problems, as she fears that it might create dangerous Plot Holes.
- Dark Horse Victory: Applejack and The Bird are the leading competitors in the Running of the Leaves, but at the last minute, Kevin Bacon wins. And he gives his medal to Twilight.
- Dark Reprise: The trailer for episode 25 uses a slow piano version of the main Scootertrix theme.
- Dating Catwoman: In Royal Correspondence episode 17, Celestia suggests that Luna could interrupt King Sombra's monologue by kissing him on the lips. (Then taking advantage of his confusion to zap him.) Celestia admits she's used that same tactic against Sombra in the past... and against Discord, and Tirek, and the Smooze, and Chrysalis.
- The Day the Music Lied: In episode 21, after The Bird, Pinkie, and Spike are captured by the buffalo, Applejack leads the rest of her friends to rescue them. Kick-ass music starts playing as they charge out of Appleloosa—then it stops a second later (with a Record Scratch) when they run into The Bird and the rest, who negotiated their own release off-screen.
- Deader Than Dead:Celestia: With the help of my magic sun powers, we cut down through their ranks! By the end of the first day, thirty thousand of them lay at our hooves, dead. ...Well, dead dead. Y'know because, well, they're zombies.
- Deaf Composer: Or rather, blind photographer; Photo Finish, who appears in episode 20, is completely blind.
- Death from Above: Apple Bloom commands a fleet of armed zeppelins; and, although they haven't been seen yet, Scootaloo also commands the pegasus cloud fortresses, which seem to be mobile aerial bombardment platforms. In episode 18, the two combine their air power to attack Sombra's zombie ground troops and drive them back.
- Death Is Cheap: For King Sombra at least. Celestia has killed him six times, but his crazed followers keep resurrecting him.
- Defensive Feint Trap: Flash Sentry uses one in episode 18 to take out a changeling battalion.
- Department of Redundancy Department: From "Scootertrix is for Adults":Twilight: Are you flirting with me?Rainbow Dash: What, did the flirting give it away?
- Didn't Think This Through:
- In episode 2, Pinkie shows the others how to dispel the scary tree faces by laughing at them. She starts to laugh at the last tree... while she's inside its mouth. The others stop Pinkie in time, and she realizes that could have been messy.
- In episode 10, Twilight goes to Charlene, Ponyville's biggest gossip, to ask if she's heard anything about the location of a biological weapon. Twi explains to Fluttershy that she doesn't want to incite a panic... and then realizes that, if she wanted to stop the news from spreading, then Charlene was the worst pony to confide in.
- In episode 17, the CMC attempt to capture a cockatrice, but they don't seem to have any strategy beyond wandering the Everfree Forest until they find it. Both Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle call Apple Bloom out on the shortcomings of this plan.
- In episode 20, Rarity invests capital in Carousel Boutique to expand her business: buying new machinery, hiring a secretary, etc. Then she remembers that ninety percent of ponies don't wear clothes.
- In Royal Correspondence episode 17, Celestia mentions in passing that she once tried to confuse Queen Chrysalis by kissing her in the middle of a battle. Considering that Chrysalis gains power by feeding on love... "That... was a mistake. Don't kiss Chryssie."
- Directionless Driver: Spike (unsurprisingly) repeatedly refuses to let Twilight see the map to the library in the first episode, until she finally gets fed up and forces it from him.
- Discussed Trope: Twilight recognizes a Scooby-Dooby Doors situation in episode 22, but can't remember how to actually get out of it.
- Dispel Magic: Twilight counters Trixie's clone spell with an "anti-clone spell".
- Don't Explain the Joke: In Episode 25:Luna: Equestria has been at peace for a thousand years.
Sombra: You mean in pieces for a thousand years. [laughs] You see what I did there?
Sombra: With "peace" and "piece"? I took a class.
Luna: Yes, I got it, thank you.
- Downer Ending:
- Episode 4 ends on Applejack suffering some kind of internal mental crisis.
- Episode 21 ends with the pony-buffalo negotiations failing, and the buffalo and changeling armies overrunning Equestria's western colonies.
- Drama Bomb: Episode 23 starts off appearing to be a normal comedic episode... then, halfway through, Applejack learns that her mother has died.
- Dramatically Missing the Point: In "Trixie the Abridged", Trixie actually gets what she's looking for: an admission from Twilight that Trixie is better than her at something. But Trixie remains unsatisfiednote and vows she'll be back to fight Twilight again.
- Dramatic Irony: In Royal Correspondence episode 17, Luna asks her alternate-universe counterpart, "Does your sister kiss her arch-nemeses? Cause mine does." What she doesn't realize is, that version of Celestia actually does want to kiss her arch-nemesis.note
- The Dreaded: In episode 19, the diamond dogs are utterly terrified of a fanfiction character, The Candymare. So scared that they all flee when Rarity tricks them into believing that The Candymare is real.
- Early Installment Weirdness:
- The scripts for the first few episodes were notably shorter than those for later episodes—Getschman explained that he hadn't yet worked out how script pages translated to minutes of screen time. For episode 1, he slowed everything down to get a ten minute runtime, making that episode notably slower-paced than all the others. Then for episodes 2 and 3, he inserted new material at the last minute to make them ten minutes long without changing the pace of the rest of the episode.
- Early episodes featured more supporting characters whose gender matched their voice actor's. Episode 10 seems to be the point where Getschman started deliberately embracing the Vocal Dissonance and casting female VA's to voice all the stallions.
- Embarrassing First Name: Dumb-Bell.Dumb-Bell: It's Dumb-Bell! My name is Dumb-Bell! ... God, my name sucks.
- Emergency Weapon: According to "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", a unicorn's horn can be used as a stabbing weapon in a pinch.
- Emotion Eater: Cockatrices feed off of fear, and use it to fuel their dark magic.
- Enemy Mine: The buffalo-changeling alliance in episode 21. The two nations aren't on good terms, but they team up because they hate Princess Celestia even more.
- Establishing Shot: Celestia and Luna's dialogue scenes always begin with a long shot on the Canterlot Palace.
- Everybody Hates Mathematics:
Apple Bloom: The academy made so much more sense. "Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance". Simple! But two times eight? Egads, what the hell does that even mean?
- Exaggerated. None of the schoolfoals are able to fathom even the most basic arithmetic.
- A closer look shows that the children aren't completely incompetent, but are just confusing their operations. When Cheerilee asks what six plus two is, the students instead give the answers for six minus two, six times two, and six divided by two.
- Exact Words:
Twilight: Applejack, weren't you the one who said to respect all the ponies in Ponyville?
- From episode 14:
Applejack: But she's not a pony! She's a changeling!
Sweetie Belle: That was so beautiful.
- From episode 23 (after hearing a character backstory):
Scootaloo: Yeah. Makes me wanna give back to society, like, help orphans or something.
Apple Bloom: You are an orphan.
Scootaloo: Yeah, I'm starting with me!
- Exploiting the Fourth Wall: In the Scootertrix universe, this is actually a superpower or form of dark magic, referred to as "The Fourth". Both Trixie and Pinkie can do this.
- In episode 7, Pinkie deliberately invokes Offscreen Teleportation to get herself and Fluttershy down from the mountain top.
- In episode 16, the main characters try to go see a movie, but tickets are all sold out. Twilight encourages Pinkie to use her fourth wall powers to get those tickets. So Pinkie deliberately creates a Plot Hole—in the very next scene, everyone has their movie tickets, and no one can explain where they came from.
- Pinkie again uses her power to vanish from the CMC's cart in Episode 23.
- Eye Scream:
- In episode 5 of Royal Correspondence, Celestia fries both her eyes by looking at the sun through a telescope.
- In "The Bird's Arch Nemesis", Derpy gets beaten up so badly that both her eyes fall out of their sockets. And she pops them back in all by herself.
- Failed a Spot Check:
- In episode 9, Twilight somehow doesn't notice Apple Bloom until she speaks up, despite the fact that Bloom is clearly in the room with them in previous shots.
- In episode 13, Applejack and The Bird both get "butt stickers" without realizing it, and don't notice them until the race is underway.
- In episode 16, Pinkie sends everypony else out of the library, then scolds Twilight for discussing The Fourth in front of others who don't know already know about it. Then at the end of the conversation, Spike chimes in—apparently he was right there for the whole thing.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: The cows seem to be a bovine equivalent of medieval Scots, accent and all.
- Fantasy Sequence: Subverted in episode 10. As the parasprites get out of control, the camera zooms in on Twilight's face and the screen goes wavy. But before we can see what Twilight's thinking, we snap back to the present—then Twilight coughs and wonders what the hell just happened.
- Flash In The Pan Fad: In episode 11, everypony is wearing a winter vest (with a matching armband) and will eagerly tell Twilight how great they are. Twilight is initially skeptical, but Spike eventually convinces her to buy a vest for herself, the very next day. When Twilight tries to buy one, Rarity isn't selling vests anymore, and says they're "yesterday's fashion".
- Follow the Leader: Pinkie sings her song in episode 10 solely because all the popular abridged series are including original songs with lyrics.
- Foreign Queasine: "Baked spaghetti noodles", a common dish from the Badlands and Rarity's Trademark Favorite Food. Unlike Real Life baked spaghetti dishes, the Badlands version involves baking completely raw noodles in the oven; they're expected to catch on fire and burn for a few minutes. Surprisingly, when Applejack finally tries the dish, she winds up enjoying it.
- Multiple characters make references to a growing malevolent force in the south throughout the first ten episodes.
- In episode 7, Pinkie Pie wonders why there's still smoke coming from the mountain after the dragon has left. Most viewers would take it as just a lampshading of the limited animation the series has to work with. Episode 11, however, reveals that this was actually King Sombra in his incorporeal smoke form.
- Also in episode 7, Fluttershy claims she left Cloudsdale because "I like to live on the edge, man!" which seems absurd, since she's afraid of everything. Episode 16 reveals that Fluttershy really is a fearless daredevil when she's at high altitudes. The thicker atmosphere near the ground affects her brain and is the real reason she's afraid so often.
- In episode 9, Applejack tells Twilight that Apple Bloom attends a prestigious foreign academy. At the time, this seems like a throwaway gag to explain her English accent; however, in episode 12 we discover that it's a military academy, and that Bloom is actually one of Celestia's top generals.
- In episode 12, Sweetie Belle wonders about the possibility of an unnamed friend spying on the changelings for the Equestrian military, again. In Episode 14, we discover that Rarity is the friend in question.
- Also in episode 12, Apple Bloom names her strategy for fighting a war on two fronts the Schlieffenpony Plan, a reference to Germany's World War I strategy, the Schlieffen Plan. The real-life plan failed because the Germans got bogged down on the western front. In episode 18, the pony version also breaks down, because the war with Sombra takes longer than expected.
- Again in episode 12, Scootaloo's proposed war strategy is a large-scale Defensive Feint Trap, but this gets rejected in favor of Apple Bloom's Schlieffenpony Plan. In episode 18, Flash Sentry pulls off a smaller-scale version of that same trap, with great success.
- In episode 13, Spike casually mentions that baked spaghetti noodles (a food previously offered by Rarity) are a common dish in the Badlands; a clue that Rarity herself is from the Badlands, as we discover in Episode 14.
- The Bird briefly mentions her arch-nemesis in Episode 16, but doesn't name her. Her identity is subsequently revealed in the special episode "The Bird's Arch-Nemesis".
- In episode 20, Photo Finish comments on various ponies' "auras", and specifically mentions "I've never felt anything like it," in response to both Rarity and Fluttershy. Rarity is a known changeling. Photo Finish's reaction is the first clue that the "Fluttershy" in this scene is also a changeling.
- Forgot About His Powers: The whole plot of episode 21 hinges on Luna forgetting that she could use her Dream Walker powers to meet with foreign leaders without leaving Canterlot, and sending the Elements of Harmony to negotiate in her place.
- The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You:
- Well, it didn't protect the show's editor from Pinkie.
- Trixie also addresses the audience directly and rather malevolently, in episode 6.
- At the end of episode 24 the mysterious voice in The Stinger directly speaks to the viewers a few times.
- Freak Out: It's subdued, but at the close of episode 4, Applejack has clearly had some kind of internal crisis, and can be seen struggling to deal with it in following episodes.
- The Freelance Shame Squad: In episode 10, the palace guards react with overblown awe when Celestia and Luna diss each other. note In episode 11, the guards somehow show up in Ponyville and have the same overblown reaction every time somepony unintentionally disses Twilight's winter outfit. For some reason, only Twilight notices them.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: Two in episode 9. When Celestia and Luna insult other Abridged Series directors, there's a blink-and-you'll-miss-it caption reassuring everyone that Getschman is actually a fan of those series. And when The Editor fast-forwards the video, the sped-up footage includes a shot of giant, black vines invading Ponyville.
- Fridge Brilliance: In-Universe, the film The Snack has layers and layers of meaning that only become apparent when you think about the movie afterwards. Allegedly.The Bird: Fluttershy, think about what happened, in the movie, for a second.
Fluttershy: Uh, okay.
The Bird: ... The Snack.
Fluttershy: [gasps] Wait, what? Oh my g— Wha— But that means—! And he was—!
The Bird: Exactly.
Fluttershy: Aw, it all makes sense now, man!
- Gag Echo:
- When The Bird talks to The Editor in episode 5, she wonders if the floating text is "the words of some all-powerful, mystic being." Twilight uses the same phrase in episode 16, when she sees Pinkie talking with The Editor.
- In episode 11, Spike's low opinion of Twilight's winter wear is echoed multiple times throughout the episode.
- One Gag Echo takes 8 episodes to repeat: Celestia originally describes her hire-children-as-generals plan as "insane...-ly brilliant", a phrase that is repeated by Rarity in episode 20 (and again by an enemy spy in that same episode), even though she couldn't possibly know that Celestia had said this.
- In episode 14, Spike speculates about the possibility of exploiting Meaningful Names, and suggests naming a pony Inventor Of The Cure For Pony Pox. In episode 23, Granny Smith wishes she had named her own daughter Curer Of Pony Pox.
- Geo Effects: In episode 18, a big reason why the battle against the Crystal Empire goes pear-shaped so quickly is because the ponies aren't used to fighting in winter conditions, while the zombies aren't affected by the cold. Eventually, Apple Bloom neutralizes this by asking Celestia to warm up the Crystal Empire a bit.
- The Ghost: Kevin Bacon plays a major role in episode 13, without appearing on-screen at all.
- Gilligan Cut: In episode 9, Twilight insists that Princess Celestia is too busy to deal with the episode's problem herself. One cut to Canterlot later, we get to see what Celestia is actually doing.note
- Giving Up on Logic: During the Running of the Leaves, Twilight simply gives up straight away on trying to figure out the nonsensical mystery of the butt stickers, so that she can have a relaxing, frustration-free race.
- Glad I Thought of It: Trixie does this repeatedly to Twilight in episode 6, infuriating her to no end.
- Glamour Failure: For the most part, changeling disguises are visually perfect (even if the changeling is a poor spy), but very occasionally, a green flash can be seen in their eyes. Rarity demonstrates this in the updated opening titles, and Harper's eyes also briefly flash green at one point.
- The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Celestia and Luna are constantly arguing (and Celestia is almost certainly the cause of every argument, intentionally or not).
- Going in Circles: Happens to the Mane Six in episode 7 when they're trying to descend Bald Mountain.
- Go Look at the Distraction: In episode 12, Apple Bloom has to hurriedly distract Miss Cheerilee from the subject of where Sweetie Belle went to school (as her time at the military academy isn't supposed to be public knowledge). It's not very subtle, but it works.Apple Bloom: Oh my God... a distraction!
- Good Thing You Can Heal: Celestia reveals in episode 5 of Royal Correspondence that immortal alicorns can regenerate from any injury given enough time. This is why she's not too fussed about having carelessly blinded herself.
- Gory Discretion Shot: Derpy sustains a number of grisly injuries in "The Bird's Arch-Nemesis", but it all happens while she's in a hole, and is never shown on screen.
- Ham-to-Ham Combat: Celestia vs Sunset Shimmer.
- Heroic BSoD: Faced with the failure of her grand strategy and the possible defeat of Equestria, Apple Bloom has a breakdown, and starts hallucinating the impending destruction of Ponyville.
- Hero of Another Story: Flash Sentry's battle with the changelings, culminating in a magnificent tactical victory on his part, is spoken of but not shown.
- Hostile Show Takeover: In "Trixie the Abridged", Trixie rewrites the opening titles to replace every character with herself, and even change the show's name to Trixie the Abridged.
- Hugh Mann:
- In episode 20, some of the changeling spies blend in very well, like Kyle and Leslie. Others don't blend at all: multiple copies of the same pony appear in crowd scenes, and one changeling walks on just two legs while he's in disguise.
- In episode 21, Harper disguises herself as a buffalo—but owing to Shapeshifter Baggage, she can only transform into a very undersized buffalo. None of the real buffalo are fooled.
- Hurricane of Puns: Twilight opens episode 24 with a parliament's worth of owl puns. Spike isn't amused.
- Hypocritical Humor:
Spike: So "Ross Pit: Shark Hunter" is weird, but "Twilight Sparkle" isn't?
- In episode 13, The Bird and Applejack make fun of Twilight's "butt sticker", because they haven't noticed yet that they're wearing butt stickers, too.
- In episode 24, the ponies get to talking about weird names, until Spike points out that their own names really aren't much better.
- In episode 25, Celestia mocks King Sombra for monologuing in the middle of a fight. As she's ranting, Sombra zaps her unconscious, and points out that she should take her own advice and stop monologuing.
- I Am the Noun:Pinkie Pie: But you can't just make stuff up, there are consequences—
Discord: I am the consequences!
- Ignored Enemy: In episode 7, the Mane Six spend so long arguing about their strategy for dealing with the dragon that he leaves of his own accord.
- I'm a Humanitarian: In episode 19, the Diamond Dogs kidnap ponies specifically to eat them.
- I Meant to Do That: Derpy accidentally breaks one of the town hall's support beams, but claims it was all part of her plan.
- Immediate Self-Contradiction:
Tirek: "Is he friend or is he foe?" the pony wonders. Well, I can assure you, my friend, I am no frien—Crap, I messed that up.
- Tirek trips himself up in his introduction.
Celestia: The advertising campaign was just to keep ponies calm when they see massive balls of exploding ice, plummeting down towards the North. [beat] Plus, I made table money off the deal.
- In episode 24, as Celestia justifies her meteor bombardment to Luna:
Luna: You sold tickets?!
Celestia: At cost, at cost... virtually.
- Immediate Sequel:
- Episode 11 ends with Celestia and Luna talking. Episode 12 begins seconds later, with them continuing the same conversation.
- "The Bird's Arch Nemesis" leads directly into Episode 20—Fluttershy can be heard boarding the train for SkyCon allowing the changeling spy to take her place in Ponyville. In fact, the sketch from "The Bird's Arch Nemesis" was originally meant as the opening scene for Episode 20—but the episode ran too long, so Getschman chopped off that scene and made it a short instead.
- I'm Not Afraid of You: Since cockatrices use fear as their energy, they're uniquely vulnerable to the rare ponies who aren't afraid of them. In episode 17, Fluttershy explodes a cockatrice by reacting to it with anger instead of fear.
- I'm Thinking It Over!: In episode 2, The Bird's loyalty is tested by apparitions of The Shadowbolts, who tempt her to abandon her friends. The Bird takes entirely too long thinking it over.Twilight: The Bird, though taking like thirty minutes! [Beat. Dramatic music stops.] ...still eventually came back to us and fixed the bridge.
- Indy Ploy: In episode 19. Lampshaded, of course:Pinkie: So, what's the plan?
Twilight: We go in, and get Rarity back.
Pinkie: Actually, that's more of an objective. A plan would be a set of actions we would take—
Twilight: No time! Diamond Dogs eat ponies. Even changeling ponies.
Pinkie: Point taken.
- In Medias Res:
- Episode 7 opens with the Mane Six at the top of a mountain, preparing to face a dragon, having just completed a long, dangerous journey to get there. Essentially, the episode is "Dragonshy" in reverse.
- Episode 19 opens with the ponies at the library, talking about nothing in particular. Spike rushes in and announces Rarity was kidnapped. There's a flashback to show the kidnapping, then the others rush off to rescue her.
- Insane Troll Logic:
Twilight: Applejack! There are apples on your flank! The word "apple" is in your name! You're growing apples!
- In episode 4, Applejack goes to crazy lengths to insist she's growing mangoes, not apples.
Applejack: Oh, no, Twilight. No, you see, my name's just a bad joke.
Applejack: No, really, it's a pun. Listen: maaaaaaaango. Maaaangoooooooo—
Twilight: Shut up!
Applejack: No, it's not a pun, it's something else.
Pinkie: Well, maybe it's some sort of an... illusion. You know, this one time I thought these trees were llamas, but instead they were just high-powered attorneys.
- Pinkie, of all ponies, indulges in this in episode 13, when trying to explain the disappearing/reappearing racer stickers:
Spike: Wow, I... I don't know what to say to that.
- Insistent Terminology:
- Rarity always corrects "noodles" to "spaghetti noodles". (In reality, there's no consensus on the distinction between spaghetti and noodles). Spike makes the same correction in episode 13.
- Celestia is very insistent on the correct pronunciation of "Grand Galloping Gala" (although it's also likely that she's doing it on purpose to mess with Luna).
- Interquel: The Bronycon 2018 special "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis" came out after Episode 24, but is set between "The Return of Lord Tirek" and Episode 23.
- Interservice Rivalry: In episode 17, Generals Bloom and Loo get into a heated argument over the relative strength of Earth Pony and Pegasus branches of the military.
- Iris Out: Inverted. Starting with episode 19, the new title sequence ends by opening up like an iris to reveal the next scene.
- As Twilight points out in episode 2, Nightmare Moon's plan to cause eternal night would just turn the entire planet into a barren wasteland. "Kind of like the moon."
- Applejack is the Element of Honesty, but she's lying to herself about growing apples.
- Fluttershy left Cloudsdale, the safest and most boring city in Equestria, because she was looking for danger and thrills. There are plenty of each on the ground—but the air screws with her head, so now she's just too scared.
- Princess Celestia has a 100% Adoration Rating among her pony citizens, even though she's lazy and callous about their well-being. On the other hand, she has a 0% Approval Rating amongst the various species of the Badlands, who blame Celestia for turning their land into a desert. But, as The Bird explains in episode 20, that isn't actually Celestia's fault.
- I Take Offense to That Last One!:Spike: She spent forty bits on an owl, just to make owl puns.
Twilight: It wasn't forty bits.
- Kafka Komedy: Any plot Princess Celestia's involved with. Celestia's solution to any given problem is some combination of lazy, selfish, and insane, but somehow her plans work out for the good of all Equestria. Anyone (usually Princess Luna) who notices Celestia's craziness and tries to protest, will inevitably get proven wrong and be mocked for doubting the sun princess's infinite wisdom.
- Lame Comeback: Episode 24 has a self-deprecating dig at rival series Ultra Fast Pony:Fluttershy: And then I said to 'em, "Ultra Fast? More like Ultra... not Fast."
- Lampshaded the Obscure Reference: In episode 19, the Jessicas gush about how much The Candymare scares them, while Rarity just watches in confusion. When they're done, Rarity just says, "Umm... esoteric?"
- Lampshade Hanging:Celestia: God I love this window.
Cumulo Nimbus: My god. She's so angry, yet she looks so calm.
- The Christmas Special pokes fun at the way character expressions often fail to match the overdubbed voices:
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: After spending several episodes—and several months of Real Life time—on the front lines, Celestia suddenly returns in episode 22. Her smug "Did you miss me?" is addressed to the audience just as much as to Twilight.
- Left the Background Music On: Episode 7 of Royal Correspondence reveals that Celestia actually pays someone to perform the three-note "jingle" heard before every Canterlot scene.
- Lie Detector: In episode 15, Twilight hooks Pinkie Pie up to one of these in order to question Pinkie about her inexplicable knowledge of the future.
- Lighter and Softer: In comparison with other MLP Abridged Series, especially the more popular ones. Other series get a lot of humor out of reinterpreting the mane six as sociopaths, and/or turning Equestria into a technicolor evil empire. Here, the mane six are flawed but still clearly trying to do the right thing, and Equestria is beset by external dangers but still worth defending.
- Light Is Not Good: The rainbow produced by the Elements of Harmony dispatches Nightmare Moon in a distinctly unpleasant manner, to the point that Applejack flatly refuses to use the Elements again.
- Little Hero, Big War: Many episodes have this feel. Even after the onset of full open war in episode 18, the conflict remains mostly in the background, and characters are heard talking about it but not directly participating. Even the CMC, the ones most directly involved in the conflict, conduct all their operations a long way from the front lines.
- Look Behind You: Apparently, this is how Nightmare Moon was first defeated.
- Loose Canon: Scootertrix's "Celestia and Luna React" videos, whose intro cards specify that they're "not canon" or "debatably canon" or "possibly canon [...] but probably not".
- Magic A Is Magic A: Unusually, the primary spell magic seen in show does not follow this rule, but the Wrong Context Magic known as The Fourth does. "The Fourth" is based on the power to manipulate the script, and therefore has to obey laws of narrative consistency; failing to do so may have dire consequences.
- Magic Versus Science: Unlike canon, magic explicitly doesn't make sense in this version of Equestria. In episode 15, Spike drops a Logic Bomb on Twilight by asking whether she trusts magic or science more. She can't answer.
- Major Injury Underreaction:
- When the Elements of Harmony strike Nightmare Moon, they literally melt her brain. But she mostly complains about the fact that her melted brains are getting in her mouth. "I can taste it!"
- After her fight with The Bird, Derpy ends up with all her legs broken and her eyes dangling out of their sockets... which she explains calmly and in excruciating detail from offscreen.
- Malicious Misnaming: In episode 22, Celestia keeps calling Fluttershy "Butterfly". She plays it off as a mistake, but considering what Celestia's normally like, it's almost certainly intentional.
- Mathematician's Answer: Photo Finish is blind, and thus can't tell how many people are in a room with her unless she asks someone. She makes a mistake in Episode 20 when she asks how many ponies are in the room with her, which fails to account for Spike.
- Meaningful Echo:
Fluttershy: I shoulda shown it, like... kindness, I guess.
- In episode 18, Apple Bloom instructs Sweetie Belle to "visualize the apples" as a mental aid for understanding the operations of basic arithmetic. At the end of the episode, Sweetie Belle uses this same phrase to calm Apple Bloom down after a panic attack and get her to start thinking rationally again.
- In episode 22, when Fluttershy realizes she hasn't been living up to her Element, she uses the same wording Twilight did all the way back in episode 2.
- Meaningful Name:
- In episode 14, Spike wonders about the fact that so many ponies have names that match their cutie marks / special talents. Then he speculates that ponies could exploit the system by deliberately naming a child something like "Ruler of Equestria", or "Inventor of the Cure for Pony Pox". (And episode 23 reveals that some ponies really do try to game the system in precisely this way).
- In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Celestia believes that Sunset Shimmer must be her arch-nemesis purely because of their opposing names... and she's right.
- Meanwhile Scene: Celestia and Luna's dialogue scenes are almost all Meanwhile Scenes.
- Medium Awareness: It seems that all characters are capable of noticing their medium (for example, the appearance of Paratext), but most don't understand what it is they're seeing, instead mistaking it for some kind of magic. Only characters who know the secrets of "The Fourth", such as Pinkie, are aware of what their medium actually is.
- Medium-Shift Gag: In episode 10, there's a brief live-action clip showing a few seconds from The Bird's favorite movie.
- Metafictional Device: Characters can actually see on-screen captions and text, as if it was physically present.
- Meta Guy: Gilda is unfamiliar with Equestria and spends her entire episode questioning why the ponies aren't exactly like Real Life horses. How do ponies pick stuff up without opposable thumbs? Why do they live in houses? Why do they eat eggs—aren't ponies supposed to be herbivores?
- Mirror Monologue: In episode 14, during her breakdown, Rarity gets into an argument with her reflection in the mirror. And she loses.Twilight: Rarity, are you talking to a mirror?
Mirror Rarity: Yes she is.
Rarity: Shut up, Rarity!
- Mock Surprise Reaction:Luna: So... you're telling me that every single zeppelin in our fleet had the exact same weapons malfunction?
Luna: At the exact same time.
Celestia: I know. What are the odds, right?
Luna: And every single one of them accidentally hit a movie theater that was showing a movie by Kevin Bacon.
Celestia: Wow, really? That happened? Oh my... whoa, what rotten luck, right?
- Moment Killer: Episode 7 has a musical montage of the mane six traveling. It ends with:Twilight: This sucks.
Pinkie: Aw, Twilight. You killed the groove!
- Mood Whiplash: The first half of episode 23, in which Celestia plays a silly prank on her generals, is lighthearted and comedic. The second half... is not.
- Multiple-Choice Future: In a metafictional spin, Pinkie Pie knows she's a character in an abridged series and can see the future by Reading Ahead in the Script. But she also knows that the Script "changes all the time", in response to characters' choices: essentially the characters are creating the Script, rather than it controlling the characters.
- Mundane Utility: In episode 16:Pinkie Pie: You want me to manipulate The Fourth, the most powerful force in our world... for some movie tickets?
Twilight Sparkle: Yeah.
- My Friends... and Zoidberg: In episode 2, Twilight easily matches each of her new friends up with one of the Elements of Harmony, until she gets to Fluttershy.Twilight: And Fluttershy... is kindness, I guess.
- My God, You Are Serious: Twilight doesn't realize at first that Nightmare Moon is serious about the whole "eternal night" thing, believing it to be some kind of strange insult.
- Mythology Gag:
- Twilight casually hums the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic theme tune in episode 4.
- The first song Pinkie tries to sing in episode 10 is the "Smile" song from "A Friend In Deed", but she gives up almost immediately because of her atrocious singing voice.
- In episode 1 of Royal Correspondence, Celestia uses the memetic "that's an academy record" line from "Wonderbolts Academy".
- The special episode "The Bird's Arch-Nemesis" cranks Derpy Up to Eleven by having her eyes not just derp, but dislodge from their sockets entirely. Thankfully, we don't get to see it.
- Lord Tirek's creepy "is he friend or is he foe" introduction is quoted directly from the show... at least until he screws up the wording.
- In Royal Correspondence episode 17, Celestia declares that having zombies as your only followers is about as lame as having rocks and bags of flour as guests at your party.
- Mysterious Past: The Mane Six—possibly sans Twilight—and Spike all have these.
- Never Trust a Title: "Trixie the Abridged" is officially a "Scootertrix Short", but it's only 9 seconds shorter than a regular Scootertrix episode.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: In episode 16, Twilight pressures Pinkie into using her Fourth Wall powers to solve the episode's problem. The resulting Plot Hole causes Discord's already-weakened stone prison to crack even further.
- Nightmare Retardant: In-universe: the cockatrice is a monster that feeds on fear, but its appearance is so bizarre that Fluttershy, of all ponies, finds it more annoying than scary.
- Night of the Living Mooks: King Sombra has a zombie army.
- Ninja Prop: Episode 7 hides major foreshadowing in a shot that savvy viewers would normally dismiss as just a footage limitation inherent to the Abridged Series format. The smoke lingers over Bald Mountain even after the dragon leaves—because in the original episode ("Dragonshy") there was no footage of the mountain peak without smoke, right? The lingering smoke was actually King Sombra, traveling to the Crystal Empire in his incorporeal form.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Doughnut Joe's voice is based on Patrick Warburton.
- No Fourth Wall: The series has a strange relationship with the Fourth Wall. Awareness of it is treated as something akin to a special power, and different characters have different levels of success in wielding that power.
- Pinkie Pie has access to the script, notices text captions, and occasionally argues with the show's editor, at one point even assaulting him (offscreen, during the closing credits). In fact, the fourth wall is so transparent to her that she sometimes breaks it by accident, which causes Twilight no end of confusion.
- Nightmare Moon is completely aware that she's the main villain of the story; she's just appalled at how shoddily her appearance was foreshadowed.
- Trixie treats her knowledge of the Fourth Wall like dark magic, using it to supplement her magical abilities. She doesn't seem to have quite the same level of access as Pinkie, however.
- At one point, Celestia, Luna, and a royal guard casually discuss other MLP Abridged Series.
- The dragon from "Dragonshy" decides to depart his scene early, knowing that he tends to meet grisly fates in other Abridged Series.
- Prior to episode 15, Twilight Sparkle appeared to be most in the dark about the Fourth Wall, probably because it's funnier that way. The rest of the Mane Six don't appear to care one way or the other.
- When Discord finally makes his appearance, he turns out to be the god of the fourth wall, with more power even than Pinkie. He can manipulate reality without visibly altering the script, completely block Pinkie's access to the script, and can deviate even further than others from the plot of the original episodes by incorporating fan animation clips.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Pinkie gives the Editor one in episode 5, off-screen, in retaliation for him intervening in the episode too many times.
- Non-Indicative Name: Singing Steve.The Bird: How are you doing, Singing Steve? Are you still singing all of your sentences?
Singing Steve: No.
- Noodle Incident:
- In the first episode, Spike tries twice to get Twilight to come downstairs to the party and see what Berry Punch is doing. We never actually find out what it is. It's then brought up again nine episodes later by Charlene, who still fails to mention what happened.
- In episode 4, when Twilight and Applejack's argument gets heated, Applejack starts rambling about some unseen incident involving The Bird and a catapult. (Presumably, it was something akin to the catapult scene from the original "Applebuck Season".)
- In episode 15, Twilight turns gray for one scene, and says it's the result of a magical accident. She's too angry at Spike to explain it any further.
- One scene in episode 16 opens with Rarity midway through explaining what sounds like some kind of Zany Scheme... except that nothing in the episode has even called for such a scheme, let alone the one Rarity is proposing, which involves some bizarre Noodle Implements.
- Sometime before episode 24, Spike and Berry Punch got into some kind of shenanigans together, which broke Twilight's oven (four times), smashed the bathroom window, used up all the straws in town, and got Ponyville onto the cover of Bad Decisions Monthly.
- No Ontological Inertia: In Episode 17, the cockatrice's petrification appears to be undone when it dies, as Twilight returns to flesh and blood without any explanation.
- Noticing the Fourth Wall: Pinkie fears that other people besides her might notice the Fourth Wall and realize that their existence is all just part of a show. Possibly this is why she starts downplaying her abilities in later episodes.
- No Title: Unlike the original show and most other abridged series, the episodes just have numbers for titles. "Episode 1", "Episode 2", and so on. (Shorts and special episodes do get titles, however.)
- "Not Making This Up" Disclaimer: In episode 5 of Royal Correspondence, Celestia has to qualify which of her statements about alicorn biology are actually true, since she'd been making up most of them to troll Luna.
- Oblivious Mockery: The main Running Gag in episode 11 is that Twilight's friends keep inadvertently insulting her winter clothing decisions, despite none of them having been present to witness them.
- Off-Model: Lampshaded. At the Running of the Leaves, various ponies' racing numbers (or "butt stickers" as everypony calls them) keep disappearing and reappearing with no explanation. Spike notices this and gets somewhat uncomfortable about the inexplicable phenomenon.
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome:
- Whatever The Bird's trick is in episode 6, we only get to see the end result of it - although presumably, it's the same trick that her show counterpart pulled in "Boast Busters".
- Twilight describes the journey up Bald Mountain as involving "hours of climbing, dehydration, and avalanches" — but because the episode opened In Medias Res, we never actually saw any of it.
- Episode 18 features the war with Changeling and Crystal Empires finally starting, after several episodes of build up. But, we only ever hear CMC talking about it from their command center.
- Offscreen Teleportation: Pinkie deliberately exploits this trope to get herself and Fluttershy off of the mountain in episode 7.Pinkie Pie: Anything's possible with editing.
- Oh, Crap!: In the cold open of episode 15, Spike gets caught red-handed in the act of sending hate mail to Celestia.
- Oh, No... Not Again!: Episode 24:Twilight: Spike, you better not destroy the oven again!
- Once per Episode: After Luna's return in episode 2, almost every following episode has at least one scene in which Celestia and Luna converse - often in the exact same place using the same animation footage. Episode 14 breaks the trend by having no appearance from Celestia or Luna at all.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: In a meta sense. Fourth Wall manipulation can be used to rewrite reality, but even that can't force a person to act out-of-character. In "Trixie the Abridged", Trixie tries to rewrite The Script to make Twilight say something she'd never say, and the resulting Plot Hole nearly destroys the entire series.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: In episode 22, Twilight's panicked voice sounds almost exactly the same as Fluttershy (as Getschman admits in the episode commentary). Particularly noticeable in the Scooby-Dooby Doors scene, where Twi and Flutters are both panicking together and both off-screen—Flutter's Verbal Tic is really the only way to distinguish between their lines.
- Ominous Visual Glitch:
- Video glitches show up in "Trixie the Abridged", as Trixie's fourth-wall meddling causes reality to break down.
- The video and audio glitch during the credits in episode 24, signaling that something is interfering with The Fourth.
- Orbital Bombardment: In episode 24, Princess Celestia summons a meteor shower to drop on Sombra's zombie forces. And she turns the event into a meteor-watching party for her little ponies (and even makes a profit selling tickets!) without telling them the meteors' true purpose.
- Orphaned Punchline: Episode 19 opens with the mane six (sans Rarity) in the library, all reacting to something The Bird just said—unanimously agreeing that The Bird should stop being such a ninnymuffin.
- Overly Long Gag: In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Princess Celestia and Sunset Shimmer spend about 30 seconds repeating back and forth that Celestia is powerless against Sunset.
- Overly Preprepared Gag:
Princess Celestia: Just think, if he were to ever come back, he'd be like, "Oh, Celestia. I'm so powerful now. I'm going to take you down." You know, and then I'd be like, "Ha! You gnome! You were my lawn ornament!"
- Princess Celestia leaves the petrified Discord in her garden—unguarded—solely so that if he escapes, she can mock him:
- In episode 24, Twilight apparently adopted a pet owl just so she could make owl puns.
- Padding: In the episode commentaries, Getschman admits that some of his early scripts were too short, so he would make something up at the last minute to fill the runtime:
- Painting the Medium:
- In "Trixie the Abridged", when Trixie accidentally makes a reality-breaking Plot Hole, some visual glitches appear—then a fake Related Videos screen pops up, so it looks like the episode ended.
- The YouTube thumbnails for episodes 24 and 25 have visible cracks running through them, signifying that the Fourth Wall is now well and truly broken.
- The mysterious voice also infiltrates the video descriptions on YouTube, writing "I'm here," below Episode 24 and "Don't worry, it will all be over soon..." below Episode 25.
- The chaotic influence in Episode 25 screws up the opening titles so badly that they only play for a few seconds, and then the end credits show up in their place instead.
- Palette Swap: Cheerilee refers to Scootaloo as "orange student", and to another student (who has Scootaloo's model but a different color scheme) as "Blue Scootaloo".
- Parodied Trope: Twilight and Fluttershy get trapped in a Scooby-Dooby Doors gag in episode 22, as neither of them can remember how the gag is supposed to work or how to escape it.
- Phrase Catcher: Mention the movie The Snack, and everyone within earshot who's seen it will repeat "The Snack!" in awed tones.
- Planet of Steves: In episode 19, all the Diamond Dogs are named Jessica. Rarity wonders how they know who they're talking to or about, but Jessica doesn't see any problem with it at all.
- Platonic Cave: Pinkie Pie believes herself to be living in one—that is, she knows that her world is just an Abridged Series on YouTube.
- Portmantitle: The name "Scootertrix" came from show creators Jack Getschman and Erich Zimbauer deciding to combine the names of their favorite ponies (Trixie and Scootaloo, respectively). Even the logo is a literal depiction of it: Trixie's hat resting on Scootaloo's scooter.
- Precision F-Strike: In "Trixie the Abridged", Trixie becomes the first character to swear without getting bleeped or cut offnote :Trixie: You haven't heard the last of me, Twilight! I'll be back! [quietly, to herself] As soon as I figure this shit out.
- Preemptive Apology: Pinkie, who can see the future, expresses her condolences to Spike moments before he is caught red-handed by Celestia.
- Previously On: The second episode has one (a rapid montage of relevant clips from the first episode).
- In the commentary track for episode 2, Getschman jokes that, thanks to this montage, it's no longer necessary to watch Scootertrix episode 1: the montage covers everything that's actually relevant, and it's better-paced, to boot.
- Promotion to Opening Titles: Generals Bloom, Belle, and Loo appear in the revamped opening titles, beginning episode 19.
- Prophecy Twist: As revealed in episode 23, Granny Smith named her daughter General Builder, in hopes that this would give her a special talent for construction. Builder then gave birth to Apple Bloom, who got sent off to a military academy and became the highest General of Equestria's military. So General Builder built a General, fulfilling her name in a way nopony expected.
- Pseudo Crisis:
- In the Cold Open of Episode 10, Celestia makes a surprise trip to Ponyville to arrest Twilight for sending her hate-mail. The punishment is death. The opening credits roll... then Celestia reveals it's all just a prank.
- The final line of Episode 11 is Celestia saying, "I've just declared war on the Changeling and Crystal Empires." The first line of Episode 12 is Celestia saying "Well, war-ish." She goes on to clarify that Equestria is secretly preparing for war, but not actively fighting one.
- "Psycho" Strings: A synthesized version plays in episode 3, when the entire town chases after Twilight for her extra Gala ticket.
- Rage Against the Author: Pinkie is not happy about the show's creator intervening in the story, as she's afraid of what will happen if everyone discovers that their world is just a show. At one point she follows through on her rage and beats up The Editor.
- Rapid-Fire Interrupting: Twilight does this to Rarity in episode 7, to stop her trying to sell a dress.
- Reading Ahead in the Script: Both Pinkie Pie and Trixie have demonstrated this ability, and use it to gain knowledge of events that haven't occurred yet. Pinkie seems better at it than Trixie is.
- Realistic Diction Is Unrealistic: Averted constantly. Quite a bit of the dialogue involves awkward pauses or characters talking over each other, especially in scenes with Rarity or The Bird.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: The ending to episode 20 was originally going to introduce Queen Chrysalis; however, Jack Getschman fell ill during the production of the episode, delaying its release. During that time, he decided that he wasn't happy with that ending, and moved Chrysalis's reveal to a later episode instead. He also reworked Chrysalis' personality, so when she does make her official debut, she'll be very different from that unused appearance.
- Reassignment Backfire: A downplayed example in Episode 18. Scootaloo is the one who assigns General Flash Sentry to the Changeling Empire's border—but Apple Bloom, who considers Sentry her rival, gloats that he won't be able to steal her glory, since he'll be so far away from the Crystal Empire, where the real action should be. Then the fighting begins. Bloom's grand strategy for the war falls apart within a week, while the only good news from the front lines is Sentry winning a major victory against the changelings.
- Refuge in Audacity: Celestia's justification for hiring children to command her army: it's so insane ("...ly brilliant!") that none of her enemies would believe it if they did find out who her generals are. In episode 20, it actually works. A changeling spy learns the identity of Celestia's generals, but his superiors assume that the ponies fed him false intel.
- Related in the Adaptation: Applejack's mother is Granny Smith's daughter in this series instead of being her daughter-in-law. Though to be fair, episode 23 started production over half a year before "The Perfect Pear" aired.
- Remembered I Could Fly: After trying and failing to climb back down from Bald Mountain, Twilight suddenly remembers that they could just fly or group-teleport down.
- Removing the Head or Destroying the Brain: As explained in episode 18, Sombra's zombies can only be killed by destroying their head. This poses a problem, because Equestria's weaponry aren't accurate enough to get headshots consistently.
- Required Secondary Powers: Episode 16 reveals that pegasi (or at least some) are specifically adapted for the thin atmosphere of high-altitude cloud cities. Getting too close to the ground, where air is thicker, does weird things to their brains. The Bird is a lot smarter in Cloudsdale than she is in Ponyville. Fluttershy, who's scared of everything on the ground, becomes an annoying daredevil in the clouds.
- Resigned to the Call: Twilight is taken completely by surprise when Nightmare Moon returns, so in episode 2, her first reaction is to run away, back to Canterlot. Before she can leave, the rest of the Mane Six ask for her help and point her to the prophecy regarding the Elements of Harmony. She reluctantly goes along with them.
- Retired Badass: Donut Joe, owner of the Sugar Pub in episode 8, once got lost in the Everfree Forest and survived inside there for an entire month.
- Revealing Continuity Lapse:
- In Episode 13, Pinkie Pie and Spike notice that various ponies' racing numbers (or "butt stickers" as everyone calls them) are disappearing and reappearing with no explanation between shots. Pinkie (who knows that they all exist inside a cartoon) tries to distract Spike so he doesn't figure out the truth.
- In Episode 16, Pinkie exploits the fourth wall to create a beneficial continuity error: getting movie tickets for her friends, even though the movie's completely sold out. The downside of this Reality Warper power is that weakening the show's continuity also weakens the seal that's imprisoning Discord.
- Rewriting Reality: Characters with power over The Fourth can literally rewrite the script, giving them the ability to change voice, form, and even alter the course of events.
- Riddle Me This: Zebras communicate entirely in riddles. This makes them excellent spies and codebreakers... and not very helpful soldiers.
- Right for the Wrong Reasons: In episode 22, Fluttershy thinks she killed Celestia's pet bird through inaction, and realizes that she's been letting fear hold her back from showing kindness to those who need it. Fluttershy resolves to be braver and kinder—and she never finds out that Celestia's bird is an immortal phoenix.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Although Celestia's attitude to ruling can be lax at times, she doesn't shirk the responsibility of running an empire when it becomes important, and takes a proactive approach to protecting Equestria from hostile forces. Luna similarly won't stand by when subjects are in need of help.
- In Episode 25, both Celestia and Luna are present at the Battle of the North to deal with King Sombra personally.
- Running Gag: In episode 16, Twilight becomes increasingly bewildered as to how her friends are managing to enter her house without her noticing. By the fifth time, she seems to have given up questioning it.
- Sadistic Choice: The buffalo ultimatum in episode 21. They intend to destroy Equestria's western colonies—but they offer to spare them, if and only if the Elements of Harmony publicly denounce Princess Celestia, which (as The Bird points out) would weaken Equestria's solidarity and undermine trust in their own government. The ponies decide to take their chances fighting the buffalo army.
- Sarcasm Mode: Nightmare Moon turns out to be pretty snarky.
- Saying Too Much:
- Though Pinkie is trying to hide the Fourth Wall from other ponies, she frequently lets slip information about the future that she only knows from reading the script.
- Rarity accidentally reveals one of Equestria's war secrets in episode 20.
- Schizo Tech: In the Battle of the North, Sombra's zombie hordes are accompanied by robotic walker tanks, while the musket-wielding Equestrian infantry are supported by zeppelins with forcefields.
- Scooby-Dooby Doors: In episode 22:Twilight: Oh, no!
Twilight: We're trapped in a Scooby-Doo door gag!
Fluttershy: Aaaaaugh! What do we do?!
Twilight: I don't know! How do they normally get out of this?
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Discord, sealed inside a statue. As of episode 15 and 16, the seal weakens a bit every time somepony breaks the fourth wall or causes a plot hole.
- Secret War: In episode 11, Celestia declares war on the Changeling and Crystal Empires in secret. (By which she really means that Equestria is secretly preparing for war, not actively fighting one.)
- Selective Enforcement: Whenever Celestia sends the mane six on dangerous missions that they logically shouldn't be qualified for, jobs that Celestia should probably just do herself, they succeed with flying colors. The one time Luna sends the mane six on such a mission (in episode 21), Reality Ensues and the mission fails.
- Self-Deprecation: Celestia and Luna both agree that Jack Getschman (the series creator) is the worst Abridged Series director. In fact, this might be the only thing they've ever agreed on.
- Seinfeldian Conversation: Conversations frequenly get derailed into arguing pointless minutia, most caused by particularly weird comments from Rarity or The Bird, or by Spike's questioning the odder details of magic or pony society.
- Shapeshifter Baggage: Discussed. Changelings have difficulty transforming into anything much larger or smaller than themselves. Rarity can change into a Diamond Dog, but only for a few minutes, and even that is really hard. Harper transforms for several days into a buffalo—but she can only appear as a weird-looking buffalo with near-pony proportions.
- Shipper on Deck: In Royal Correspondence episode 17, Celestia gets really fixated on the idea of Luna kissing Sombra in the upcoming battle.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Rarity's breakdown in episode 14 is rather heartbreaking, especially as she's usually the go-to for ridiculous humor or dialogue.
- Shout-Out: Now has its own page.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Celestia and Luna are very different in temperament, and always end up at odds with each other.
- Sidetracked by the Analogy: In episode 24, The Bird is in the middle of a conversation, and tries to illustrate her point with a story about a guy named DerpedChaos411. Everyone else wonders why the guy is named DerpedChaos411 ("It was the first name that came to my head"), and soon enough they're all debating which names are and aren't totally weird.
- Skewed Priorities:
- In episode 4, the cow curse results in all of Ponyville's crops dying. Daisy Wishes and Lily Valley fear that everyone's going to starve to death, while Roseluck complains that her rose bushes died as well.
- In episode 18, in the initial days of the war, the CMC seem more concerned with their math homework than with the war. Then, when bad news comes in from the front, Apple Bloom's first reaction is to gloat that her arch-nemesis Flash Sentry finally lost a battle.
- Smash Cut: The first episode ends with one.
- Smash to Black: Often used as a kind of visual Sting to transition between scenes.
- Episode 15's chilling Cliffhanger ending uses one before going to credits.
- So Last Season: In Trixie's first two appearances, Twilight bests her easily with her magic. But by "Trixie the Abridged", Trixie's learned much more about manipulating the Fourth, and Twilight's usual magic can't even touch her anymore. Then Pinkie proves to be even better at using the Fourth, and fixes all the damage that Trixie caused. And then the mysterious voice at the end of episode 24 runs circles around Pinkie while negating her usual script-reading powers.
- Sound-Effect Bleep: It's literally impossible to swear in the Scootertrix universe without getting bleeped, as the crossover episode "Scootertrix is for Adults" demonstrates. Presumably this is due to the actions of The Editor.
- Sound-Only Death: Nightmare Moon's death is obscured by the rainbow tornado produced by the Elements of Harmony; however, she remains conscious long enough to give an disturbing commentary on what's happening to her.
- Special Edition Title:
- For the 2015 Halloween Episode, the usual titles are redone to show the characters in their Nightmare Night costumes. It also replaces Celestia (always the first character to appear in the titles) with Luna, who's the main focus of the episode.
- For the "Scootertrix is for Adults" crossover episode, the other universe's Pinkie Pie steals Spike's place in the opening titles.
- Trixie replaces every character in the titles of "Trixie the Abridged".
- Episode 25's opening titles are so badly corrupted by Discord that they're barely able to play for more than a second.
- Standard Snippet: The Establishing Shot of Canterlot is always accompanied by the first few notes of Bach's Toccata and Fugue played on a pipe organ (referred to by Celestia as "the jingle").
- Stating the Simple Solution: In Episode 21, Princess Luna needs to negotiate with the buffalo tribes, but she can't leave Canterlot—so she sends the Elements of Harmony in her place. The buffalo Chief wonders why Luna doesn't just talk directly via the dreamscape; at the episode's end, Luna herself wonders the same thing.
- Stealth Pun: In episode 13, Applejack tries to slow down The Bird by throwing a beehive at her. It's The Bird and the bees.
- The Stinger: An extra scene pops up after the credits in episode 24—a sign that someone with a lot of power over the fourth wall is now tampering with the show.Pinkie Pie: What the hell? There's an after-credits scene? But there's never an after-credits scene!
- Straight Man and Wise Guy: Luna and Celestia.
- Strange Minds Think Alike:
- The phrase, "We meet again, in the most unusual circumstances..." is apparently a standard part of Arch-Nemesis banter. Steven Magnet says it to Rarity in episode 2, Trixie says it to Twilight in episode 6, Derpy says it to The Bird in "The Bird's Arch-Nemesis", and Sunset Shimmer says it to Celestia in "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis".
- Episode 8: In all three subplots (Twilight, Applejack, and Rarity in the library; Spike at Donut Joe's bar; and Celestia and Luna in Canterlot), the characters all wind up talking about zombies at exactly the same time.
- Episode 11 is full of this, with every character giving exactly the same commentary about the vests they're wearing. Naturally, this completely exasperates Twilight.
- Episode 19 opens with the other ponies telling The Bird to not be a "ninnymuffin". Later on, Rarity (who wasn't present for that conversation) distracts the Diamond Dogs by informing them that Jessica called them ninnymuffins.
- In episode 24, Princess Celestia and Twilight both independently use the phrase "ripe for making wishes on," to describe the meteor shower.
- Also in episode 24, Twilight imagines the weirdest name she can think of, and comes up with "King Cocoon". Rarity points out that she used to know a King Cocoon.
- Storyboarding the Apocalypse: In episode 18, as all Apple Bloom's plans fall apart, she has a vision of the changeling army overrunning Ponyville.
- Subverted Catch Phrase: Rarity's usual line is "Do you wanna buy a dress?", but in episode 11, she's selling vests instead.
- Synchronous Episodes:
- The "Scootertrix is for Adults" crossover is actually two episodes, happening simultaneously. The episode on Scootertrix Studio's channel is about three Friendship is for Adults characters exploring the Scootertrix universe; the episode on TheKanterlot's channel is about three Scootertrix characters exploring the Friendship is for Adults universe.
- Episode 15 of the main series shows Celestia punishing Spike for the hate mail he sent. Episode 3 of Royal Correspondence shows the immediate lead-up to the punishment, and then Luna's reaction to Celestia's incessant cackling afterwards.
- Episode 18 of the main series and episode 9 of Royal Correspondence both happen during the first week of the war. The main series covers the CMC's actions, while Correspondence shows what Celestia and Luna are doing.
- Take Our Word for It:
- Kevin Bacon shows up in episode 13 (yes, that Kevin Bacon), but he's never once seen on screen or heard speaking, despite somehow winning the Running of the Leaves race.
- Apparently Kevin Bacon is the master of this sort of thing. In episode 16, his film The Snack is so great that everyone who sees it immediately gushes over how amazing it is. The audience never gets to see the movie or even hear what it's about, because everyone's praise is so vague.
- When the war starts in episode 18, the fighting is never directly shown. The audience just sees the CMC's command center and hears reports from the front lines.
- Take That!: The opening to episode 15 takes a jab at the infamously ill-considered moral lesson of "Feeling Pinkie Keen":Pinkie Pie: Just because there are things in this world you can't explain, doesn't make them any less true.
Twilight: What? No. That's stupid. That's a stupid moral.
Pinkie Pie: Okay, fine, it is a stupid moral.
- Talk to the Fist:
- In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Sunset Shimmer gloats at length about how Celestia is completely powerless to stop her... then Luna interrupts her monologue by blasting her straight to Tartarus with one shot.
- Episode 25: having apparently learned nothing from Sunset's example, Princess Celestia starts monologuing at King Sombra (ironically enough, about how stupid he is for monologuing), and Sombra zaps her unconscious in the middle of her rant.
- A Taste of Their Own Medicine: In episode 20, Twilight silently breaks into Rarity's house, in the same manner that everypony had been doing to her in many previous episodes. She's rather smug about it.
- Tempting Fate:
Apple Bloom: We can allow some change in our plan. It's not like anything drastic has happened.
- Episode 18:
[Smash Cut to next day]
Sweetie Belle: The zebras surrendered.
Fluttershy: Okay, maybe I can do it. You know, but just as long as that thing stays in its— [notices the bird has already left the cage] ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
- In episode 22, Fluttershy thinks maybe taking care of Celestia's pet bird won't be so bad:
Pinkie Pie: Just be thankful that nothing seriously bad happened. This could have been a real disaster.
- At the end of "Trixie the Abridged":
[Cut to the Royal Garden in Canterlot. Discord's statue is broken to pieces.]
- That Mysterious Thing: Half of episode 16 is characters talking about the movie The Snack, without giving a single hint as to what it's about, or what happens in it.
- These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know: In episode 17, Scootaloo claims she'll be discussing such things with Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle. She's mostly exaggerating to make Fluttershy leave them alone.Scootaloo: You couldn't handle the kind of things we do. Our discussion would warp your fragile little mind. Everything you know would become a living nightmare! Your brain would explode from the sheer horr—
Apple Bloom: That's enough out of you!
- There Are Two Kinds of People in the World: Granny Smith thinks otherwise.Granny Smith: Applejack, if you think the world is filled with "ponies who lie", and "ponies who tell the truth", then you're only half right. We sometimes lie to protect ourselves, and sometimes to protect those we love.
- This Is a Song: In episode 10, Pinkie's song is about the fact that she's singing a song in an abridged series.
- Title Drop: In episode 18, after Apple Bloom sees Scootaloo pull off an impressive stunt:Apple Bloom: Whoa! Those are some insane... scooter tricks!
- Tomato in the Mirror: Discussed. When the topic of changelings comes up, Fluttershy panics over the possibility that she herself could be a changeling without realizing it.
- Travel Montage:
- In episode 2, the journey through the Everfree Forest is presented as very brief scenes of the ponies overcoming various obstacles, connected by Jump Cuts. (Basically, it's every joke Getschman could think of for the journey, while completely skipping all the non-joke parts in between.)
- Episode 7 has a more traditional montage: background music playing over scenes of the ponies climbing down the mountain.
- When the mane six talk about "weird names" in episode 24, a few of those names—King Cocoon, Apanx, and Ross Pit: Shark Hunter—come from Scootertrix's Patreon supporters.
- In "Raiders of the Lost Nemesis", Twilight contracts an illness called "Larsonism" which causes her to sprout wings; this is a reference to writer M A Larson, who wrote the original show episode in which Twilight gains her wings.
- Unreliable Narrator: At the end of episode 2, we find out that it was Celestia who was narrating the Storybook Opening—which raises a lot of doubt as to just how much of it was accurate.
- Unreliable Voiceover: When Fluttershy describes her backstory in episode 23, she says she flew to the surface in an ill-advised act of bravado, where she was attacked by "the morph". As she narrates, the flashback shows she actually just tripped and fell, and a swarm of butterflies saved her.
- The Un-Reveal:
- In episode 23, the generals learn all the mane six's backstories. But The Bird shares her story (which apparently included a satisfactory explanation of how she got her name) completely off-screen, so we don't get to hear any of it.
- In episode 24, Applejack finally tries some of Rarity's baked spaghetti noodles, but we don't get to see them at all. The scene cuts away just before AJ digs in; then when the scene cuts back, she's finished eating and asks for a copy of the recipe.
- Unknown Rival: Dumb-Bell calls himself The Bird's arch-nemesis. The Bird doesn't even remember who Dumb-Bell is.The Bird: No. I already have an arch-nemesis, and you're not her.
- Vagueness Is Coming: It's not until episode 8 that we're given any indication as to what the "unpleasant thing stirring in the south" is.
- Visual Pun: In episode 12, Apple Bloom scares Doctor Hooves away.Apple Bloom: Egads, what was that all about?
Applejack: Oh, that was a doctor. Apples keep them away, you know.
Apple Bloom: I d...What?
- Villain: Exit, Stage Left: At the end of "Trixie the Abridged", Twilight and Pinkie don't stop Trixie from just leaving. Twilight wonders if this is such a good idea, but Pinkie thinks Trixie has learned her lesson.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: There's some antipathy between Generals Bloom and Loo, whose different views on fighting the war put them at odds; Apple Bloom wants to win in the most practical way possible, while Scootaloo just wants to make the enemy suffer.
- Vocal Dissonance: Overall, this applies to nearly every pony in the series; mares have male voices and stallions have female voices. (There are a few exceptions, like Princess Luna and Sweetie Belle.) The crossover episode "Scootertrix is for Adults" implies that this is perfectly natural in the Scootertrix universe.
- The Voiceless: Despite being introduced and being present in every scene with his friend "Blank Flank", Snips never says a single word.
- Weirdness Censor: Ponies are remarkably good at not noticing inconsistencies and weirdness around them, until some outsider points them out.
- In episode 5, The Editor inserts text where anypony can see it, and even tells all the guests at Pinkie's party that they're just characters in a cartoon show. Once Pinkie (rather forcefully) convinces The Editor to stop talking to others, everypony else forgets about those weird floating words by the next episode.
- Spike is the only one who thinks there's something odd about the the disappearing/reappearing "butt stickers" during the Running of the Leaves.
- Even Twilight isn't immune to this. She's the expert on Equestrian magic, but she never notices how arbitrary and inconsistent it is unless Spike points the details out to her.
- Wham Episode:
- Episode 14 brings a major reveal regarding one of the main characters, and is distinctly less lighthearted than previous episodes. It's also the first episode (barring the pilot and specials) not to feature a Celestia/Luna scene, and instead focuses entirely on Rarity and her story.
- In Royal Correspondence episode 9, the war from the main series has repercussions in Canterlot, leading to a major development in Celestia and Luna's relationship, and the potential for Luna to finally earn some more respect. Again, it's distinctly less comedic than prior episodes.
- Wham Shot:
- Rarity's changeling detransformation in Episode 14.
- At the end of episode 15, Discord's statue cracks, as excessive Fourth Wall use weakens his stone prison.
- The final shot of "Trixie the Abridged": Discord's statue is completely broken.
- What the Hell, Hero?: When Twilight suggests using the Elements of Harmony to defeat the bugs in episode 10, Applejack flatly refuses, having seen what the Elements did to Nightmare Moon.
- Who's on First?:
- In episode 14, The Bird and Pinkie Pie both mishear "changeling" as "changing", leading to a bit of confusion.
- There's a bonus video where Celestia breaks the fourth wall to announce that Scootertrix has a server on Discord (as in, the chat program). Luna thinks she's talking about Discord (the petrified master of chaos), and Celestia does a terrible job clarifying.
- Who Writes This Crap?!: Nightmare Moon is deeply unimpressed with the poorly-handled foreshadowing of her appearance.
- We Can Rule Together: King Sombra makes this offer to Princess Luna in Episode 25.
- We Meet Again: This appears to be the standard opening line for arch-nemeses.
- We Will Meet Again: At the end of "Trixie the Abridged".Trixie: You haven't heard the last of me, Twilight! I'll be back! [quietly, to herself] As soon as I figure this shit out.
Twilight: Yeah! You had to have your little exiting monologue, didn't you?
Trixie: Trixie's not talking to you anymore!
- A Wizard Did It: Whenever Spike points out the questionable logic often on display in Equestria, the only explanation he tends to receive is, "It's magic."Twilight: It's magic, Spike! It doesn't need an explanation.
- The Wonka: Photo Finish. She's a blind photographer—and apparently she gets around that slight disadvantage by sensing ponies' "auras". She also kicks her clients' shins for no reason. In spite of these eccentricities, she's so good at her work that she turns Fluttershy into a famous fashion model and saves Rarity's boutique.
- Won't Take "Yes" for an Answer: At the start of Episode 14, Rarity asks Twilight yet again if she wants to buy a dress. Twilight says "Yes," for the first time. Rarity can only answer with a shocked "... What?"
- Words Can Break My Bones: As revealed in episode 23, asking anypony if they've seen a purple letter with a red stripe on it will magically compel them to exposit their backstory. Celestia trolls her generals by telling them a letter just like that went missing, so they'll ask around and trigger the effect.
- The Worf Effect: King Sombra earns a bit of villain cred by creating a nightmare that's impervious to Luna's Dream Walker powers.
- The World Is Not Ready: Pinkie hides the truth about the Fourth Wall, reasoning that it would drive too many ponies into depression or madness.
- Worthy Opponent: When Kevin Bacon wins the Running Of The Leaves, The Bird has no problem admitting that he deserved to win.
- Wrong Context Magic: "The Fourth".
- Yank the Dog's Chain: In Episode 16, the Mane Six finally find a way to get tickets to see The Snack, only to learn that every theatre playing The Snack has been destroyed by malfunctioning military airships.
- You Are Fat: Trixie throws a few fat insults at Twilight in "Trixie the Abridged".
- You Can't Handle the Parody: Actually played rather dramatically, for a change.Twilight: Oh, I have had it. I feel like I can't trust you guys anymore! I want the truth!
Pinkie: You can't handle the truth!
Twilight: Pinkie! I have fought against gods! I have dealt with cow curses, plagues, famines, dragons, rabbits, biological weapons, and the insane craziness that is Ponyville! I think I can handle whatever it is you have to say! So, say it!
Pinkie: We're inside a TV show.
- You Can't Thwart Stage One: Amusingly averted in the short "The Return of Lord Tirek". Tirek's attempted takeover of Equestria lasts about a minute. The mane six confront him before he can absorb any pony magic, and immediately send him back to Hell with the Elements of Harmony.
- Your Door Was Open: Twilight's friends will often invite themselves into her house, much to Twilight's annoyance. Sometimes there isn't even a logical explanation for how they got inside. It becomes a Running Gag in episode 16, then gets inverted in episode 20, when Twilight inexplicably appears inside Rarity's house.